Saturday 24 November 2012

Sudden move south

When some of the northern Earls, led by Blessed Thomas Percy, established the celebration of Mass again in Durham Cathedral in the Autumn of 1569, Elizabeth Tudor and her Privy Council were thrown into paroxysms of neurosis. Mary Stuart had to be moved further south so that these northern Catholics would not include her in their enterprise - The Northern Rising.
In November 1569 Mary was moved to Coventry Castle in Warwickshire. Her party stopped overnight in the castle at Ashby-de-la-Zouch, and then passed south to Coventry. Coventry Castle started as a Norman Motte and Bailey structure. This was demolished towards the end of the 1100s but then substantially rebuilt. Mary Stuart was lodged both in the castle itself and in a house near the castle. She would almost certainly have known the great Hall (photo above) which became the Guildhall of Coventry. Later alterations, not least by Parliament after the Civil war, and then the bombing by Hitler's Luftwaffe in 1942, have destroyed all but one small tower of the castle. It is not thought that the Scottish Queen actaully lodged in this tower, which can still be seen. Mary remained in Coventry until 2nd January 1570, when she returned to Tutbury for the third time.

No comments: